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Donner's Tactics Strategy Guides #1 General Strategies

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Donner
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Donner's Tactics Strategy Guides #1 General Strategies

Hi, guys!  I said I wanted to write a guide for each character after GenCon....and...well....it's after GenCon!  I am planning on putting up one guide a day until I get them all done.  But, due to my work, my forgetfulness, etc, it may be far fewer than that.  But I will finish!  And any tips, etc, that you guys have, feel free to add to these!

This first guide is general strategies.  These are not character specific in that the person using them doesn't have to be a particular character to apply them.

General Strategies

                Start with at least one defensive card in play.  Feel free to swap it out later, but it helps if your character doesn’t get incapacitated before their first action.

                Know your enemies and their powers.  If Wraith has Slip Into Shadows in play and you have only one attack, it isn’t a good idea to attack her.  Likewise, if Legacy has Heroic Interception in play, beat up his allies that are out of his line of sight or use his ability to make Legacy take extra damage (like from entering hazard spaces).

                If you have no other actions to take in a turn, consider taking a Dodge action.

                You don't have to move your full movement for Sprint actions.  You can even sprint 0 if you'd like! (Thanks MigrantP!  Wasn't sure on that last part myself.)

                Be aware of the capabilities of combinations of heroes.  Some examples: Bunker’s Omni-Cannon is strong, but add Legacy with Inspiring Presence and Galvanize and now Omni-Cannon can be used on Bunker’s first turn if Bunker goes after Legacy.  Proletariat with Champion Bot becomes a damage power house across the map without ever having Champion Bot leave the starting area.

                Dodge tokens best counter aimed low-damage attacks like Nimble Strike and Throwing Knives.

                Defense tokens best counter high-dice, non-aimed attacks.

                Likewise, attack tokens can overcome low-defense targets due to unblockable dice and Aim tokens can make attacks strong enough to get past high-dice, non-dodge defenses.

                Targets with Defense – 1 tokens are more vulnerable to aimed attacks, even if they have Dodge.

                Dodges are often best saved for rolls with more than one attack die at 4 or greater.  Likewise, Aim tokens work well for attacks at range 4 or higher, where not making range can severely reduce your successful dice.

                Remember that Defense tokens can be used to augment a dodge token and gain the full benefit of the highest die rolled, or can be the highest die rolled and boost all the other dice!  The same goes for Attack tokens.

                Attack and Defense tokens aren't lost at the start of your turn, so build them up when you have a chance.  Just watch out for characters like Baron Blade who can punish you for having them or Citizen Dawn who can incapacitate you and remove all that hard work.

                It is more effective to use defense tokens against attacks with lower numbers than attacks with higher numbers.  The higher you need to roll to succeed, the harder it is to defend.  But sometimes you gotta go against the odds.  And, if you're dodging already, you really only need one high value die, so spend 'em until you succeed.

                Some notes about auto-misses:

                Fewer automisses are better than more automisses, and low auto-miss values are better than high auto-miss values.  If an attack has one more die than another attack, but also adds one more auto-miss chance, be careful about using it.  The odds of getting an auto-miss are: 

               0 auto-misses:  0 in 6, 0% chance of failure except from range.   Aim is super-effective for this attack.

               1 auto-miss:   1 in 6, or about 15% chance.   Even low-dice attacks can be effective at this point.  Watch Tachyon with Nimble Strike and Unrelenting Momentum.

               2 auto-misses:  2 in 6, or about 33% chance.  Things get a bit hairy here, but your mid and strong attacks usually have 2.

               3 auto-misses:  3 in 6, or about 50% chance.  Only a few attacks have this many miss values.  These attacks are usually Hail-Mary attacks, useful in key situations, but you may want to avoid them the rest of the time.

               4 auto-misses:  4 in 6, or about 66% chance.   Attack + 1 dice become really iffy here.  You may not want to add them to the attack at all.

               5 auto-misses:  5 in 6 or about 85 % chance.   This attack better have a lot of dice!

               6 auto-misses:  WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!?!  YOU SHOULDN"T EVEN BE MAKING THIS ATTACK!

               If you have a choice between an attack of 3 dice with an automiss of 2 or an attack of 4 dice with an automiss of 1 and 2, the first attack will get all automisses in about one in 33 rolls or so.  The second attack will get all automisses in about one in 10 rolls (if my math is correct).  To get it to have similar odds as the first to completely automiss, you'd need 2 more dice, for a total of 6 dice in the attack.

              As for low auto-miss values versus high auto-miss values, there are a bunch of factors automisses affect:

              1.  Maximum range - If you auto-miss on 6, your range is shorter than it could be.

              2.  Defense dice against the attack - remember that defense has no auto-misses.  If the defender rolls a 6, it blocks any attack die roll, no matter what.  If the attack has an auto-miss of 6, however, that means a defense roll of 5 or 6 will block it.

              3.  Low auto-miss dice really mostly reduce how many dice you'll succeed with.  High auto-miss dice affect how strong your attack is. 

              4.  Aim dice can only be as effective as the highest value you can succeed with.  

              Let's look at some auto-miss values for some powers and see what it says about that attack:

              Ra's attacks - All of Ra's powers are fire.   Fire always auto-misses on 2's and 5's.  The 2's mean Ra is more effective at melee range, than when two hexes away from a target.  At three hexes away, he normalizes again.  With 5's as automisses, when Ra makes an attack without aiming, he has the usual 1 in 6 chance of getting a high attack, but if he doesn't, his next attack success is 4.  Since ties go to the defender, that means if he rolled no 4's, the defender has a 50% chance on each defense die to block Ra's second-highest attack value.  For fire effects, this gives the feel of being really painful close up, good mid-range, and having a ton of damage at the high end, but being volatile over-all.  Either he does really well or he does kinda mediocre.  Aiming is Ra's best friend.

             Snapshot Micromissiles - These guys auto-miss on 1, 2, and 3.  Minor elevation or range issues (ignoring the Range + 4 on the attack) aren't a problem, because those lower dice already auto-miss.  However, half of his die values are automisses.  That Bunker has a 50% chance on each die to miss completely.  But, if he does hit, the defender only has a 50% chance or less to defend against the attack, because all of the success values are 4 and up.  An aimed Snapshot Micromissles attack can be really strong, since 6's are still successes.

            Two other interesting powers are Focused Blast and KREE-OWW!!!.  Focused Blast auto-misses on 1 and 6.  It doesn't lose anything between ranges 1 and 2, but in the end it can't roll as strong of values as other attacks because the top value, 6, is an auto-miss!  Bunker's Flak Cannon also misses on 6, making it a not-that-strong attack.  But Focused Blast dodges that bullet (or heads straight towards it at full speed?) because, after auto-misses, she re-calibrates her dice to exactly make range and then double for each that was over range originally.  Focused Blast is LOUSY at long ranges, but DEVESTATING at short ranges.  

            KREE-OWW!!! auto-misses on 3 and 4.  Usually this means that KREE-OWW!!! does amazing damage at short ranges or potentially really strong damage at long ranges.  But, once again Beacon throws us a curve-ball.  KREE-OWW!!! is an area attack and ignores ranges.  About 1/3rd of the dice from the attack will be low damage and easily blocked.  Another third will be high damage and hard to block.  And the rest just misses.  To me, this power feels like it can either overwhelm defenses by sheer number of dice (5 die attack) or by power (5 or 6 as successes), but it never does mediocre.  In some ways, it means it will either be really weak or really strong, and not much in-between.

            Remember that, in the end, random die rolls are still random.  You could have an attack with 5 auto-misses and succeed on every die.  Or you could have one auto-miss value and miss on every die.  How lucky do you feel?

                Here's a great link with more info on auto-misses.  Thanks, Pydro and Phantaskippy!

                And one on the odds that any number of dice will not be auto-misses based on different numbers of auto-miss dice from Phantaskippy.

                And another about what the chances are of getting a particular movement roll for each character, also from Phantaskippy!

                Stay tuned for the next guide:  Absolute Zero

Edit:  Edited to add a bunch of stuff about odds and miss-chances.


"Deja-fu? You've heard of that?"
- Lu Tze, Sweeper, Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett

Edited by: Donner on Aug 17 2015 - 8:05am
arenson9
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Donner wrote:

You can even sprint 0 if you'd like!

I thought this was the case, but Paul ruled the opposite during one of my tournament matches at GenCon.


Hi. My name's Andy. Feel free to call me Andy, since, ya know, that's my name. (he/him/his)

If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If not now, when? If I am for myself alone, what am I? -- Hillel

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In that case, sprint away then back.  Just don't do it in hazardous terrain.

 


"Deja-fu? You've heard of that?"
- Lu Tze, Sweeper, Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett

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According to the rulebook, sprint is "up to 2 hexes". That should include 0. It's been discussed in tournaments before and IIRC Christopher allowed it.


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Correct!


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One of the best Interception counters is Ra with living pyre and flame spike.

Walk right up to a squishy enemy and attack them.  If Legacy intercepts, congrats, you get 4 attacks on him.  Although, with no dice boosting it can fail horribly.

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Saving this sort of thing for the relevant character(s).  This guide is general strategies only.  Something any character can use.  Then people can look up character-specific awesomeness when they're playing as or against particular characters and find it in the relevant guide.


"Deja-fu? You've heard of that?"
- Lu Tze, Sweeper, Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett

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I have some documents at BGG that show odds on number of dice clearing automisses for different dice# and automiss#, as well as movement roll odds and one that organizes all attacks by automisses.  Dom't know if those would be helpful to you.

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I don't visit BGG.  Could you post some links?


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